How to Avoid Real Estate Wire Fraud
There are probably few things as financially devastating than saving for years for that down payment to buy that home of your dreams in Miami only to end up losing both your down payment and home due to a Real Estate Wire Fraud.
Yet, Real Estate wire fraud is a problem is that growing each and every year costing individual property buyers to lose big money that more often than not is non-recoverable. Understanding how wire fraud works and being able to protect yourself from becoming a victim in necessary in today's world where cybercrime is a growing problem.
How Real Estate Wire Fraud Works
- A criminal sends an email containing malware to a Realtor, title company, or closing agent. The malware allows the criminal to monitor the emails of the company and check on their transactions and upcoming closing dates on various real estate deals.
- As the closing date nears, the criminal then uses the Realtors, title companies or closing agents email account to send a message to the home buyer instructing them that the down payment needs to be paid before the date of closing by wiring the money into the seller's account.
- The account however, does not belong to seller, but is rather an offshore account belonging to the criminal. From there your down payment is quickly shifted from one off shore account to another making it difficult if not impossible to trace.
- With your down payment gone, you lose your home and your hard-earned money, and the likelihood of recovery any or all of the money is extremely slim.
The only way to avoid to losing your down payment to a Real Estate Wire Fraud Scheme is to know how to avoid these schemes.
How to Avoid Becoming a Victim of Real Estate Wire Fraud
There are several steps you can take to avoid a Real Estate Wire Scheme. Here are few simple, but effective things you can do.
1. Remain aware that Real Estate Wire Fraud does exist and is a growing problem in Miami and across the nation.
2. When buying a home discuss with the Real Estate Agent, Title Company or Closing agent how the down payment is to be paid, and if wiring the funds can be avoided. Suggest that you would prefer paying your down payment to a responsible agent in person and getting a receipt that the down payment has been received. If you have to wire the down payment, ask in advance how and when this will occur and how you will be notified of any changes. So, if you get an email requesting something different you will automatically know to be on guard.
3. If you do receive an email asking you to wire the down payment into an account, then take the time to contact the Realtor, title company, or closing agent at a number you know belongs to the company and request that verify all the information contained in the email you received. Follow up the phone call by both an email and regular letter stating the date of your call, who you spoke to and the agreed upon manner that you will pay your down payment and the account that you are too wire the payment.
Only you can protect your down payment from Real Estate fraud and it is worth the extra time to make sure that your money reaches the seller and not someone who is trying to steal your money so you can have your Miami home you have been dreaming about.
Contact us today if you’d like to learn more about Miami Real Estate or are looking to buy or sell. Miami Real Estate Official are local specialist and part of the number 1 agency in Miami Dade and South Florida whom have helped numerous clients with real estate needs accomplish their real estate goals.